Lawn Mower: Sharpen Your Mower Blade

Sharpen your Mowing Skills with a New Edge on your Dull Blade.

A sharp blade is the first step in maintaining a gas or electric push mower. The blade should be sharpened or replaced at least once a year, preferably at the beginning of the mowing season.

Step 1: Disconnect the mower’s spark plug wire by pulling the rubber cap up and off the top of the plug.

Step 2: Tip the mower directly backwards. Use a cinder block or tool box to weigh the handle down on the ground, allowing safe access to the underside of the mower deck. Tipping the mower to its side, rather than backwards, can cause irreparable damage to the engine. Do not tip the mower on its side.

Step 3: Use a block of wood or tool handle propped through the discharge chute and against the blade to keep the mower blade from spinning as you remove it.

Step 4: With a large adjustable wrench or open end wrench, loosen the bolt holding the blade in place by turning it counter clockwise. Remember, lefty loosey, righty tighty.

Step 5: You can sharpen the blade yourself by placing it in a vise and making smooth even stokes along the cutting bevels with a flat bastard file. Be careful to keep the strokes equal on each side of the blade to maintain its balance. For a more professional edge, take the blade to your local hardware store or tool shop. The blade will last longer and cut better if sharpened properly.

Before replacing the sharpened blade, take a moment to scrape off any debris beneath your mower deck. Once you have secured the blade back in place, remove the wooden block, gently lower your mower to the ground, re-attached the spark plug wire and let the mowing begin!

Access the underside of your mower only with the engine off and the spark plug disconnected. Always tip the mower backward, rather than to the side or front.

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